The American Museum of Fly Fishing and its “Exhibition Profiles” are the profiles of important women fly anglers, fly tyers, conservationists and guides of yesterday, today and tomorrow“
The American Museum of Fly Fishing and its “Exhibition Profiles” are the profiles of important women fly anglers, fly tyers, conservationists and guides of yesterday, today and tomorrow“ Exhibition Profiles” are from the book “A Graceful Rise” written by Catherine Comar, executive director of the museum. Promotional narrative for National Endowment for the Arts is provided by Fly Life Magazine.com. Copyright the American Museum of Fly Fishing (AMFF) – 2014. More images are viewable in the book.
Meet Annette McLean[dropcap]B[/dropcap]orn in Southwestern Montana and raised on a ranch with a mountain creek flowing through it and the Madison River just a couple miles away, Annette grew up imagining the life that fish lived. She remembers catching big brown trout with her hands from the creek late in the summer when water flow was low and the browns were easy to reach under the rocks. After graduating from Montana State University with a degree in finance and accounting, McLean and her husband Bob moved to Twin Bridges, Montana, where her husband pursued a teaching and coaching career. Twin Bridges also happens to be the home of the R. L. Winston Rod Company.
The R. L. Winston Rod Company was originally founded in San Francisco in 1929. In the mid-1970s, Tom Morgan, the new owner of Winston, moved the Company from San Francisco to Twin Bridges, Montana in order to “build the finest fly rods along the back of some of the finest trout waters in the world”.
In 1985, McLean secured a job working for Morgan and the Winston Company. Her first job at was to buff and polish aluminum reel-seat parts before the anodizing process. Winston produced virtually all of the reel seats. Soon after, she was also finishing the wood seat inserts as well as machining some of the metal seat parts. Shortly after Morgan sold the company to David Ondaatje, McLean became the customer service contact. A couple years later she stepped into the position of the graphite rod production manager and held this position for ten years.
During this time, McLean also traveled as a Winston ambassador to conduct casting clinics for women and children and served as a board member with the International Women Fly Fishers and the local Lewis and Clark Chapter of Trout Unlimited.
In 2006, along with her responsibilities for graphite rod production, McLean also became responsible for Winston’s bamboo rod program. In 2008, she stepped out of graphite rod production and began working with the owner of the Company on the design of graphite rods.
Now in her twenty-ninth year of working for the R.L. Winston Rod Company, McLean continues to work the graphite rod design requirements, supervise the bamboo rod development program, and oversee the daily and long term performance of the Company as the Vice President of Operations and Design.
Annette McLean and her husband continue to live in Twin Bridges and her family remains avid anglers. Her comment at the time of this writing was, “With some of the finest trout waters in the world in my front and back yard and my continuing affiliation with R. L. Winston Rod Co., I continue to live the dream.”[information]
American Museum of Fly Fishing 4104 Main Street Manchester, VT 05254 802-362-3300. Open Tuesday-Sunday, 10am to 4pm –[/information]
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